Being a family in missions can be tricky. It’s constantly adjusting and finding that place of flow, so our children don’t feel like they’re just along for the ride. The goal is really for our children to feel very much a part of ministry – to act truly as a family in missions – together.
With the work we’re doing at La Ola, our kids truly do get a chance to share in ministry with us. In fact, there are moments that I notice they are just as vital to the ministry as Scott and I are.
For instance, I watched Jude yesterday, bouncing on our trampoline with a homeless street boy – he was making him laugh so hard, bringing so much joy.
When kids arrive at La Ola one of their first questions is, “Where is Kai?” If he’s not there, he’s truly missed. Or sitting together with another mom while our babies play on a blanket together – it’s such a bonding experience to both have small children playing together.
In addition to a skate contest, there was also a raffle going on and kids were winning different prizes – hats, decks, t-shirts and more.
Well, there is one boy that comes to our program who has some special needs. He doesn’t understand how to relate to others socially, he’s demanding, he doesn’t have friends. He’s the one that gets picked on the most. Other kids throw rocks at him. Even adults laugh at him. He’s despised and one of the most at-risk kids in Jaco. We do our best to talk with him to help him regulate his emotions so he can be successful while at the program. Our children know him very well and have seen often how gets treated.
Well, during the night, this boy won a prize in the raffle. He won one of the BEST prizes – a SKATEBOARD. Oh my. He just didn’t even know what to do. I don’t think he’s ever won anything like that in his life. He was so overjoyed, he couldn’t stop smiling. It was one of the most incredible moments of the night.
After it was all over and I was tucking Kai into bed that night. He looked at me and said:
“I don’t know why, but when D got his skateboard it felt like the happiest moment of my life.”
He shook his head, “I don’t know,” he paused, “It felt like inside my heart was just going crazy!”
Oh! It just took my breath away. Kai is living through this and experiencing these things, taking it all in. I am thankful that his sensitive heart was touched. That he recognized what an amazing moment that was and shared with me how it made him feel.